Recently I have been partaking in being educated. Which means, I have been taking a writing class. I think that you can never stop learning and knowledge really is the key. So with that I decided taking a class could only help. Right?
Well I have to tell you I am a little confused. We had a lively discussion where the instructor, whom I am sure is quite lovely when she is not doing her Nurse Ratched impersonation. Okay, she isn't quite that bad...we do get bathroom breaks.
But I digress.
During our last class she was
harping and harping insistent that good writers write what they know. Write only what they know based on life experience. Huh? I know quite a lot of things that I have not experienced. For example I know the North Pole is cold, frosty, frigid, with temps that plunge dangerously low. Have I ever been? Nope and I truly have no desire to go. Not even to meet Mr. Clause himself. Okay, maybe I would change my mind if he had a really hot son/brother/friend with Christmas tatts on his body...again I digress.
My point here is I completely disagree. I think many authors have written well with no first hand experience of their subject matter at all. Research is a great tool that can help and also having a wicked imagination doesn't hurt either. I just don't buy that I need to experience space travel in order to write about it. Or own a car that is possessed to create great drama and horror.
I would like to say I did get something useful from the class but that would not be truthful. No, wait, I just thought of something I did get out it which made spending that $99.00 more palatable. I know what kind of a writer I don't want to be. I don't want to be the kind that closes her mind to the ideas of others. I don't want to be the kind that can't be open to new things. No, wait, sorry. I already learned that through blogging and tweeting.
One of my good friends Alyson Peterson wrote a great story called Sour Grapes. Her writing is spot on and her character development blew me away. When I first heard the story premise I clearly thought to myself that it would not interest me. Thank goodness I was wrong. Her story is about St. Peter who guards the pearly gates of heaven. Well suffice it to say, the story telling was marvelous and the only thing I can say is I hope it gets published because her writing was so well done I could see it being made into a movie.